Qian (Lindsey) Ling, a member of the LL.M. Class of 2014, provided words of welcome at William & Mary Law School's Diploma Ceremony on May 11, held under sunny skies at Lake Matoaka Amphitheatre in Williamsburg, Virginia.
Ling was among three speakers welcoming more than 2,000 family members and friends to the event, which also featured greetings from William & Mary Law School Dean Davison M. Douglas and Student Bar Association President Sean J. Radomski J.D. '14. The Honorable Antonin Scalia, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, gave the commencement address.
Fifty-four international students received LL.M. degrees in the American Legal System at the ceremony, in addition to 215 students who received Juris Doctor (J.D.) degrees that day.
In her remarks, Ling recalled receiving her acceptance to the LL.M. program on an auspicious day in the Chinese calendar, the day of the spring festival. Her year of study at William & Mary, and that of her LL.M. classmates, was punctuated, she said, by celebrating joyous occasions, such as the marriages of some of their classmates, and by everyday concerns, such as reading case law and preparing to be called on in class. She expressed her appreciation to the faculty for their help, to the Law School staff for providing an environment conducive to studying, and to her American J.D. classmates for their "open hearts and kind smiles." She closed by saying "thank you" in each of the languages represented by students in this year's LL.M. program.
Ling received her Bachelor of Arts degree in law from Renmin University of China and is a graduate of Longxi Country (No. 1) High School in the Gansu Province. During her undergraduate legal studies, she was honored for her excellence as a legal assistant, student leader, and Moot Court participant. She plans to continue her legal studies upon her return home to China, where she hopes eventually to teach law and practice law with a firm that has an international focus.
Thomas Jefferson founded William & Mary Law School in 1779 to train leaders for the new nation. Now in its third century, America's oldest law school continues its historic mission of educating citizen lawyers who are prepared both to lead and to serve.
William & Mary Law School's innovative LL.M. Program in the American Legal System is designed for foreign-educated students and attorneys who want a comprehensive overview of the American legal system. The Law School has been welcoming students from all over the world to the program since 1989.